Story by Ashleigh Sherow
The Town of Warwick held its annual re-organizational meeting on Mon., Jan 2. Town Supervisor Michael Sweeton started off 2017 by looking back at the Town of Warwick’s accomplishments and challenges in 2016.
“2016 in Warwick continued to set high standards for our municipal government,” the Supervisor stated.
Some of Sweeton’s notes included that Warwick remains one of the towns in Orange County with the lowest town property taxes. He also touched on the Town’s commitment to public safety and the outstanding job of the Department of Public Works. There were improvements to existing recreation and the opening of a new park, the Wickham Woodlands.
The 2016 Right to Farm Law was passed to preserve the Town’s farms. Sweeton also looked forward to 2017, where the Town will face major road projects. The Town will also face challenges as costs continue to rise.
“We can transform these challenges into opportunities,” said Sweeton. He concluded by thanking the Town Board and Town employees.
Warwick Valley Dispatch Named Official Paper
The Warwick Valley Dispatch was named as the official newspaper o the Town of Warwick.
Key Bank, Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase (formally Bank of New York), Orange County Trust, Sterling National Bank (formally Provident Bank), and the Greater Hudson Bank was designated as the official banks of the Town of Warwick.
Salaries & Pay Rates Established
The salaries of the elected officials are as follows: Supervisor – $61,200; Town Clerk – $56,075; Councilmen 11,750 each; Justices at $26,500 each; and Receiver of Taxes at $40,435.
The Board adopted a resolution that the salary for the DPW Commissioner Jeffery Feagles be $87,916.00; Deputy DPW Commissioner Ben Astorino be $65,422; and the salary for Deputy DPW Commissioner, William Roe, be $57,932.
The salary for Assessor Deborah Eurich will be $87,429. Town Assessor Deborah Eurich was appointed as the Administrator of the Star Program for the year 2017 at a salary of $2,075 per year.
Rosemarie Bastanza will be Supervisor Sweeton’s confidential secretary at a salary rate of $42,430 for the year.
Town Clerk Eileen Astorino was appointed to the position of Records Management Officer at a salary of $2,626 per year.
The Board adopted a resolution that part-time help be paid at a rate of no less than $9.70 per hour nor more than $30.09 per hour depending on qualifications and experience.
A resolution was passed to compensate part-time Dispatchers at a rate of up to $15.25 per hour when needed. The Board also adopted a resolution that part-time Highway Laborers be compensated at a rate of $10.95 per hour for new part-time laborers and $12 per hour for returning part-time laborers when needed.
The Board also passed a resolution to pay the Receiver of Taxes part-time help, Mary Beth Lodema at a rate of $18.35 per hour and Margaret Finn at $14.50 per hour.
Robert W. Fink was appointed as Attorney for the Zoning Board of Appeals at a yearly retainer of $7,650. J. Theodore Fink of Greenplan was appointed as the Town of Warwick Planning Board Consultant at a rate of $155 per hour for all Planning Board application review work and $110 per hour for all other town related work.
Supervisor Sweeton made a motion seconded by Councilman Gerstner to adopt a resolution setting salary for part-time Dial-A-Bus drivers at $15.75 to $16.39 per hour.
Pamela Carroll was appointed as recording secretary of the Zoning Board of Appeals at a rate of $12.25 per hour. A motion was also passed to compensate the Chairman of the Zoning Board of Appeals at a rate of $600 per year and that members of the zoning board of appeals be compensated at the rate of $450 per year and this monetary compensation being in lieu of mileage and other incidental expenses.
The Board adopted a resolution that 25 percent of the salaries in the Supervisor’s office be paid from funds of the water districts and the sewer districts of the Town. They also adopted a resolution that all employees and Town officials be reimbursed at the IRS rate when using their own vehicles on officials Town business.
The Board approved a motion to adopt a resolution to appoint Shirley Moellman as part time Town Hall Cleaner to be paid at a rate of $12.50 per hour and accept the 2017 contract in the amount of $6,445 as per quote with Turner Clearing Service of Montgomery, NY and the 2017 contract of Krystal Cleaning of Florida, NY in the amount of $290 per week.
Fuel Allotment to Veteran Organization
A resolution was adopted to grant a $700 fuel allotment to each of the following veteran’s organizations: VFW Post #4662 (Warwick); American Legion Post #214 (Warwick); American Legion Post #1250 (Florida); American Legion Post #1443 (Greenwood Lake); and PLAV Post #16 (Pine Island).
Town Board Meetings Set for 2017
Town Board meetings will be held at 7:30 p.m. in the Town Board meeting room, 132 Kings Hwy. on Thursdays in accordance with the following proposed meeting dated schedule: Jan. 19; Feb. 9 and 23; Mar. 9 and 23; Apr.13 and 27; May 11 and 25; Jun. 8 and 22; Jul. 20; Aug. 17; Sept. 14 and 28; Oct. 12 and 26; Nov. 2 and 16; and Dec. 14 and 28. Town Board workshops be held at the Town Hall meeting room one-and-one-half hours before the Board meetings.
Planning Board Meetings Scheduled
Planning Board meetings will be held at 7:30 p.m. on the first and third Wednesdays of the month, except for holidays. The meetings are held at the Town Hall meeting room.
The Board adopted a resolution that the Planning Board Chairman be compensated at a rate of $3,500 per year and that members of the Planning Board be compensated at the rate of $2,500 per year with this monetary compensation being in lieu of mileage and other incidental expenses. HDR, P.C. was appointed as the Planning Board Engineer as per the 2017 rate schedule.
ZBA to Meet Fourth Monday
The Board adopted a resolution that the meetings of the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) will be held on the fourth Mon. of each month at 7:30 p.m. in the Town Hall meeting room.
Investment Policy Accepted & AMI Services
The Board accepted a motion to adopt a resolution to accept the Investment policy of the Town of Warwick as adopted Jan. 4, 1993. Supervisor Sweeton noted that he had reviewed the law and it was compliant with the municipal law. The Town also approved the Town of Warwick Procurement Policy and Procedures as adopted on Jan. 4, 1993 and amended on Jan. 3, 1995 and Jun. 11, 2015.
The Board also adopted a resolution to authorize the Supervisor to sign a maintenance program agreement with AMI Services for the servicing of the HVAC system at Town Hall including the Senior Center for 2017.
Appointments for 2017
The Supervisor then made his appointments. James Gerstner was appointed as Deputy Supervisor at a salary of $6,000 during the year 2017 with all the powers of Supervisor. He was also appointed as Technology Coordinator and to Recreation, Cable Television Regulation, and Town Board Liaison of the Village of Warwick.
Supervisor Michael Sweeton was appointed to planning and zoning; the Budget Director; and as collector of sewer and water rents at no additional compensation.
The Town adopted a resolution to recommend to the County of Orange that Supervisor Michael Sweeton be appointed as Local Emergency Manager and DPW Commissioner Jeffery J. Feagles as Deputy Local Emergency Manager at no additional compensation.
Councilman Floyd DeAngelo was appointed to Animal Control, Police, the Airport and as Town Board Liaison to the Village of Greenwood Lake. Councilman Russell Kowal was appointed to parks and labor management. Councilman Mickey Shuback was appointed to water and sewer, recycling, public works, and Town Board Liaison to the Village of Florida.
Michael Sweeton, James Gerstner, John Johansen and Michael Newhard were appointed as Town of Warwick Marriage Officers. Supervisor Sweeton and Councilman Shuback were appointed to the Town of Warwick Audit Committee for 2017; Melissa Stevens was appointed as Registrar of Vital Statistics at a salary of $1,400; and Carolyn Purta was appointed as Deputy Registrar of Vital Statistics at a salary of $550.
David Decker, Linda Lupinski and Neil Ryan were appointed as bailiffs to be compensated at a rate of $14 per hour. Richard Koziola was appointed as Bingo and Games of Chance Inspector to be compensated at a rate of $17 per hour. Dr. Richard Hull was appointed as Town Historian and Sue Gardner was appointed as Deputy Town Historian at no compensation except for mileage and expenses.
John Bollenbach was appointed as Deputy Town Attorney at a retainer of $20,000 per year and any litigation, and Purchase of Development Rights (PDR) program at the prevailing rate. Jacobowitz and Gubits, LLP; Beattie & Krahulik; and Bluestein, Shapiro, Rich & Barone, LLP were appointed as Special Counsel as per the 2017 rate schedule to handle matters as per advice and recommendation of the Town Board. Donoghue, Thomas, Auslander & Drohan LLP were appointed as labor counsel as per the 2017 rate schedule.
Town Clerk Eileen Astorino appointed Carolyn Purta and Melissa Stevens as Deputy Town Clerks at no additional compensation to act for her during the year with all powers of the Town Clerk. Receiver of Taxes, Brenda Faulls appointed Mary Beth Lodema as Deputy Receiver of Taxes at no additional compensation to act for her during the year 2017 with all the powers of receiver of taxes.
Benjamin Astorino was appointed as Chairman of the Town of Warwick Planning Board and John D. Bollenbach was appointed as Planning Board Attorney as per the 2017 rate schedule. Jan L. Jansen was appointed as the Chairman of the Zoning Board of Appeals. The Board appointed Suzyn Barron, Rebecca Hanlon, Kathleen Mosca, Cheryl Esposito and Amber Crandall as Town of Warwick Animal Control officers.
Stephen M. Brown was appointed as financial and budget advisor to the Town of Warwick as per the 2017 rate schedule. Tectonic Engineering Consultants Inc. and HDR PC were appointed as Engineer/Deputy Code Enforcer/ Building Inspector for the Town as per the 2017 rate schedule. R.M. McKelvey, SJA Technologies Group LLC was appointed as Town of Warwick Computer Consultant as per the 2017 rate schedule.
The Board adopted a resolution authorizing the DPW Commissioner to assist local municipalities when needed and in turn they will assist the Town of Warwick at no additional cost to the Town of Warwick. The Board adopted a resolution to approve the Public Officials Faithful Performance Blanket Bond of the Selective Insurance Company, Policy #B6010335, listing the Supervisor at $155,000, the Receiver of Taxes at $2,712,383 and all other officials at $50,000 each.
The Board adopted a resolution to authorize the Receiver of Taxes to establish bank accounts with Sterling Nation Bank for deposits of tax collections. The Board also adopted a resolution to authorize the Town Clerk to establish a bank account with Sterling Nation Bank for Town Clerk deposits of Town Clerk fees.
Next Meeting on Jan. 19
The next regular meeting of the Warwick Town Board will be on Thurs., Jan. 19 at 7:30 p.m. at Town Hall, located at 132 Kings Hwy., Warwick.